Picture this: Magic Pony Technology gets snapped up by Twitter

21 Jun 2016

Investing in machine learning is the go-to tactic for tech companies looking to plan for the future. Twitter is no different, acquiring London-based image specialist Magic Pony Technology .


Buying Magic Pony Technology makes sense for Twitter as it bids to up its AI armoury.

The London company is a developer of machine-learning and visual-processing technology, essentially trying to adapt images to how the human brain works, something it calls ‘using neural networks’.

This means images adapting for various uses, be that virtual reality, augmented reality, video or simple user enhancement. TechCrunch claims Twitter is paying out around $150m for the deal.

“Machine learning is increasingly at the core of everything we build at Twitter,” said Jack Dorsey, Twitter CEO and co-founder.

“Magic Pony’s machine-learning technology will help us build strength into our deep-learning teams with world-class talent.”

For the money it’s ploughing into the purchase, Twitter will inherit a team including 11 PhDs and experience in some major tech labs, with expertise across computer vision, machine learning, high-performance computing, and computational neuroscience.

It follows Twitter’s purchase of Madbits in the summer of 2014, and Whetlab this time last year. That summer feeling really sets Twitter’s acquisition pulses racing, it seems.

Last week, it was announced that former RTÉ broadcaster and Storyful founder Mark Little is to take the helm as managing director of the company in Ireland. After four-and-a-half years in the nest, Stephen McIntyre is departing to join Frontline Ventures at the beginning of July.

Twitter image via Prathan Chorruangsak/Shutterstock

Gordon Hunt was a journalist with Silicon Republic